I cannot say that I am sorry to see the back of that bank holiday to be honest with you. Parts of it were rather lovely. Burnham Beeches in the late afternoon sunshine, eating piping hot chips recommended by a horse, snuggling on the sofa watching Benedict Cumberbatch being Sherlock, picking and eating radishes we have grown in our garden. It was not all bad, granted. But I think, were I to give it an honest assessment it would be; ‘Could do better if tried harder.’
Vomiting, temperatures, lack of husband, homework and then the final indignity yesterday, a small, smidgeon of a car accident on the way home from the car boot sale via granny’s house for a cuppa.
We were almost home when it happened.
I live just off of a main arterial road in the city, Welford Road. I live not far from a tricky little area called Overdale Road cross roads. When I am coming back from granny’s I approach this delightful place from a road called Aberdale Road. As I get to the cross roads in question I have to filter left and wait for a set of traffic lights to indicate that all is well and all manner of things will be well. In theory I am then able to sail majestically left onto Welford Road and go about my business.
It sort of lies about this.
You have to be very cautious when coming out of this junction, as traffic can filter out of Overdale Road directly opposite and then curl round into your lane, even though your green light is telling you to go. They have priority.
I was at the head of the queue yesterday, filtering out of Aberdale Road. The green light pinged. I inched forward cautiously, checking for traffic from the right. Something was coming, and I dabbed the brakes on gently, to wait for the car to go by.
Sadly, the chap behind me did not dab his brakes on, and just saw the light was green, so he went. He went straight into the back of me with a large bang.
I think, with hindsight that it was very lucky that I had only touched the brakes. If I had had my handbrake on, he would have shunted me into the middle of the road and that would have been very bad. As it was, we pushed forward a little bit rather than a lot.
I could still drive the car, so I pulled left and parked in a handy bus stop.
The chap pulled in behind me and we got out to assess the situation.
His car came off worse than mine. Mine has some interesting scrapes on the paint work and a bit of the back bumper has shunted forward, but otherwise seems fine. He had cracked his radiator and was standing sheepishly in the road in a puddle of steaming water.
It could have been worse. He was very apologetic, and indeed should have been, as it was not my fault (which is the only thing about this whole fiasco that I find remotely cheering). We exchanged details, and I left him in a puddle of steam, trying to figure out how he was going to get to the hospital to pick up his wife who had just had a baby daughter the night before. I did feel rather sorry for him. I suspect he was thinking more about getting to the hospital than about the road in front of him.
I was rather impressed with myself that I was very calm throughout. It was only when I got home and started to call people and sort out the insurance that I went a bit wobbly and had a good cry. But I think that’s allowed under the circumstances.
We are all fine. My neck was a little sore, but isn’t this morning, which is good. The children were rather shocked, but bounced back remarkably quickly and were hurtling round the garden on scooters ten minutes after we got in the door. I was a bit ‘argh’ about getting in the car again, but as I had to go and pick Jason up from a van rental depot in the middle of the city an hour after we got home I had no choice but to drive, which is probably a good thing.
I’m now waiting to hear from the garage about when my car can go in to be checked over. I’m sure it will be hugely inconvenient and no doubt drag on for the next three or four weeks, during which time they will try to give me a courtesy car that is terrifying in its complexity. Probably a stretch Bentley or a Hummer or something. I shall resist and ask for the oldest, most beaten up car they have. The insurance company wanted to know if I could drive Jason’s car while mine was in the garage. I merely snorted. The likelihood of me ever driving his car, except in some kind of life or death situation where the only other option is being eaten alive by sharks, is slim to none. And even if I were to try I would only sweat all over his leather upholstery, which would make him sad.
So, I await the countless emails, phone calls, and sheaves of paperwork that are about to descend on me with all the delirious joy of someone waiting for a root canal.
On the other hand, we are all alive, we are all ok, and I still have all my own teeth.